Consumable Texts in Contemporary India: Uncultured Books and Bibliographical Sociology

Springer
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Through what he terms "bibliographical sociology", Suman Gupta explores the presence of English-language publications in the contemporary Indian context – their productions, circulations and readerships – to understand current social trends.
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About the author

Suman Gupta is Professor of Literature and Cultural History at the Open University UK. He is the author of eleven previous books and editor of seven, including The Theory and Reality of Democracy, Social Constructionist Identity Politics and Literary Studies, Globalization and Literature, Imagining Iraq and Contemporary Literature: The Basics.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Springer
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Published on
Feb 23, 2015
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Pages
204
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ISBN
9781137489296
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Language
English
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Genres
Foreign Language Study / General
Literary Criticism / Asian / General
Literary Criticism / General
Literary Criticism / Semiotics & Theory
Social Science / Anthropology / Cultural & Social
Social Science / General
Social Science / Sociology / General
Social Science / Sociology of Religion
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Spider Eaters is at once a moving personal story, a fascinating family history, and a unique chronicle of political upheaval told by a Chinese woman who came of age during the turbulent years of the Cultural Revolution. With stunning honesty and a lively, sly humor, Rae Yang records her life from her early years as the daughter of Chinese diplomats in Switzerland, to her girlhood at an elite middle school in Beijing, to her adolescent experience as a Red Guard and later as a laborer on a pig farm in the remote northern wilderness. She tells of her eventual disillusionment with the Maoist revolution, how remorse and despair nearly drove her to suicide, and how she struggled to make sense of conflicting events that often blurred the line between victim and victimizer, aristocrat and peasant, communist and counter-revolutionary. Moving gracefully between past and present, dream and reality, the author artfully conveys the vast complexity of life in China as well as the richness, confusion, and magic of her own inner life and struggle.

Much of the power of the narrative derives from Yang's multi-generational, cross-class perspective. She invokes the myths, legends, folklore, and local customs that surrounded her and brings to life the many people who were instrumental in her life: her nanny, a poor woman who raised her from a baby and whose character is conveyed through the bedtime tales she spins; her father; and her beloved grandmother, who died as a result of the political persecution she suffered.

Spanning the years from 1950 to 1980, Rae Yang's story is evocative, complex, and told with striking candor. It is one of the most immediate and engaging narratives of life in post-1949 China.
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